Talk ‘N Text will be gunning for a share of the lead when it battles Alaska while Blackwater and Rain or Shine are on a hunt for a second win today in the Philippine Basketball Association Season 41 Governors’ Cup at the Ynares Sports Center in Antipolo City.
The Tropang Texters (2-0), under coach Jong Uichico, will meet the Aces at 7 p.m. in the second game after the 4:15 p.m. match between the Elasto Painters and the Elite.
TNT, led by Jayson Castro and Asian import Michael Madanly, are coming off a two- win streak, against Rain or Shine (101-98) and sister team Meralco (98-95).
Mahindra is occupying the top spot with 3-0 win-loss record.
“We really need to have a good start that’s why we’re playing our best,” Castro, who posted 19 points and 10 assists in their previous game against Rain or Shine, told The Manila Times. “I’m hoping we sustain this performance all the way in this conference.”
Castro finished with 24 points plus seven rebounds and five assists against Meralco.
Castro and Madanly will be supported by import Mario Little, Ranidel De Ocampo, Moala Tautuaa, Ryan Reyes, rookie Kris Rosales, Harvey Carey and Larry Fonacier. Team manager Virgil Villavicencio also announced the return of Jeth Troy Rosario after a minor knee sprain .
Alaska, on other hand, will be playing without Calvin Abueva who is serving a one-game suspension for elbowing Chris Ellis during Sunday’s game against Ginebra. Abueva was also fined P22,000 for the offense.
But even without Abueva, import LaDontae Henton is expected to play in top form just the way he did against Ginebra on Sunday when he posted 29 points highlighted by five triples and nine rebounds.
“I came in and tried to be more focused. I will do it again for my team to win,” said the 6’5 Henton after the game. “It takes some adjustment but I’m learning quickly. Coach Alex (Compton) is a great guy to learn from.”
Compton will also utilize the prowess of Vic Manuel, guard Jayvee Casio, Dondon Hontiveros, Joachim Thoss, RJ Jazul and rookie Kevin Racal against TNT. Alaska is presently holding a 1-1 win-loss record.
Meanwhile, coach Yeng Guiao of Rain or Shine told his wards to go all-out against Blackwater; “I’m not surprise why Mahindra is leading the league now. If we play less than 100 percent of our effort, the danger of losing is there,” Guiao told The Manila Times in a phone interview. “We have to give our very best. We have to limit also their import [Eric Dawson] and their guards.”
After losing to Talk ‘N Text, the Elasto Painters beat Phoenix for a 1-1 win-loss record.
Rain or Shine will be relying on import Dior Lowhorn, Paul Lee, Jeff Chan, Beau Belga, Jay-R Quinahan, Raymond Almazan and Gabe Norwood against the Elite.
Blackwater, fresh from a close victory over the Star Hotshots, will bank on the talents of import Eric Dawson, JP Erram, Mike Cortez, Carlo Lastimosa, Bambam Gamalinda and forward Reil Cervantes.
The Elite also hold a 1-1 win-loss record.